Monthly Archives: May 2016

Sea Salts vs White Table Salt

 

 

(Source: sodiumbreakup.heart.org)
(Source: sodiumbreakup.heart.org)

 

Our bodies need salt to work properly. So what’s wrong with getting it from good old table salt?
I’ll compare the ubiquitous Morton’s Salt with a popular, easy to find sea salt, Pink Himalayan, to address that question.
salt-was-gold
SALT IN HISTORY
  • As early as 6,050 BCE, Egyptians made religious offerings of sea salt to their gods.
  • The earliest known treatise on pharmacology was published in China around 2,700 BCE. A major portion of this work was devoted to a discussion of more than 40 kinds of sea salt.
  • In about  2,200 BCE, Chinese Emperor Hsia Yu levied the first tax ever – on sea salt.
  • Sea salt was a valuable trade item between the Phoenicians and the lands in their Mediterranean empire.
  • In ancient Greece, slaves were traded for sea salt – an unsatisfactory slave was said to be “not worth his salt”.
  • The word salary is derived from the word salt. Sea salt was highly valued and its production was legally restricted in ancient times so it was often used as a method of trade and currency.
  • Salad is also derived from salt – from the early Roman practice of salting their leafy greens and vegetables.
  • Among other English words derived from sal are sauce and sausage.
  • Salt has been a symbol of fertility over the ages – it’s the root of the word salacious.
  • Revered as a precious mineral, salt was once traded ounce per ounce for gold.
  • Salt bars were, and are still, used as money in parts of Ethiopia.
  • Marco Polo reported that in Tibet, cakes of sea salt were pressed with images of the emperor and used as currency.
  • During the War of 1812, the American government, unable to pay their soldiers in coin, paid in salt brine.
Salt was deservedly highly esteemed throughout history – from the sea, necessary for life, full of minerals and other trace elements. The commercially processed table salt generally in use today, with its trace minerals removed and chemicals added, has essentially been rendered toxic.
(SaltWorks, 2016A) & (Hardin, 2014)

 

(Source: www.sunflower.ch)
(Source: http://www.sunflower.ch/en/moneymuseum/coins?&id=409)

Ethiopia, Amole Salt Bar (obverse)

 

 

 

 

PROCESSED TABLE SALT

 

1952-ad-morton-salt-girl-mascot-food-grocery-kitchen-cooking-baking-rain-child-original-print-ad_3109973

Refined salt (table salt – the ground up white stuff found in salt shakers in most American homes and on the tables at restaurants) is basically refined sodium chloride with additives, such as anti-caking agents to extend its shelf life and keep it from clumping together in salt shakers. (Food52, 2012)
In the refining process, the salt is  soaked in a solution which may contain sulfuric acid or chlorine and various bleaches. Then it is heated to a temperature that removes its minerals and other trace elements that our bodies need to function. Some processed salt is then spray coated with  an iodide as it moves along a conveyor belt before getting packaged. (Hardin, 2014) & (The Salt Institute, 2013)
(Source: foodmatters.tv)
(Source: foodmatters.tv)

 

IODIZED TABLE SALT
‘Iodized’ table salt manufactured in the US has had potassium iodide added to it. This synthetic form of iodine is also problematic. When an iodide is added to refined salt, a stabilizer, generally dextrose (a sugar), must also be added to keep the potassium iodide from breaking down and releasing iodine fumes into the salt container, giving the salt an unpleasant chlorine-like odor.  So you’re getting sugar along with your salt when you use iodized table salt. (Fentress, 2011) & (The Salt Institute, 2013)

 

2173554959_f2e2c4ac11

We obtain iodine from eating fish and shellfish, eggs, cereal grains, legumes, dairy products from factory farmed animals fed with iodized salt, and some food additives. There’s also iodine hidden in cough expectorants; antiseptics; drugs such as sulphonamide, lithium, dopamine, steroids, aspirin,  certain heart and anti-diabetic drugs; and natural supplements such as kelp and seaweed. (Hardin, 2014)
Iodized salt adds greatly to our iodine intake. As a result, people in the West risk iodine overload. As much as 75% of the body’s iodine is stored in the thyroid gland and used to produce hormones regulating metabolism. Too much iodine causes the levels of these hormones to become dangerously unbalanced, leading to metabolic and immune disorders. (Thomas, 2009)

TABLE SALT CONTAINING SYNTHETIC IODINE

refined_salt

SEA SALT CONTAINING NATURAL IODINE

unrefined_salt

 

BENEFITS OF REFINED TABLE SALT?
(Source: www.thehealthminded.com )
(Source: www.thehealthminded.com)
Refined salt is cheap. It’s added to almost all manufactured foods and most food eaten in or purchased from restaurant chains and other restaurants.
On average, Americans consume more than 3,400 mg of refined salt per day. Of this amount, about 75% is derived from processed food. The other 25% comes from sources such as water treatment and medications.
Processed salt is a significant ingredient in most processed foods and restaurant meals – many individual meals contain far more than a day’s worth of sodium.
Processed table salt provides virtually NO benefits for the body and causes numerous health problems. (Hardin, 2014)
Refined table salt has had all its health giving trace minerals removed during processing. These minerals, naturally present in sea salts, help balance blood pressure. “Consequently, table salt causes gross blood pressure fluctuations, instead of stabilizing it. This well-known danger has created an entire industry of ‘low sodium’ foods.” And, by the way … those stripped trace minerals are then sold to supplement manufacturers! (Corriher, 2008)

 

 

REFINED TABLE SALT IN PROCESSED FOODS

Sodium Content in Processed Foods

(Source: preview.www.thedailygreen.com)
(Source: preview.www.thedailygreen.com)

 

“Processed foods are very high in sodium, but it is always in the form of table salt, artificial flavors, or flavor enhancers. In the ultimate heart-health irony, low sodium products often contain monosodium glutamate, a sodium-based excitotoxin that causes heart attacks in people who do not have enough magnesium (from organic vegetables and sea salt). It is probably the most common reason for mysterious heart failures in young athletes, who simply fall-over dead at sporting events. The profuse sweating imbalances their electrolytes even further, to become the final straw on the camel’s back.” (Corriher, 2008)

 

(Source: www.hsph.harvard.edu)
(Source: www.hsph.harvard.edu)
ADDITIVES IN REFINED TABLE SALT

A Partial List of Additives in Refined Salts

(Source: Real Salt)
(Source: Real Salt)
“Contrary to popular belief, table salt is not just sodium chloride. It also contains additives that are designed to make it more free-flowing. Ferrocyanide, talc, and silica aluminate are commonly included. Aluminum intake leads to neurological disorders, particularly when no selenium is provided to help the body to chelate it. Aluminum bio-accumulates inside the body, causing further degeneration over time. Talc is a known carcinogen, though its effects upon ingestion have not been heavily studied. While it was once used in baby powders, the majority of such products now use cornstarch instead of talc, because of the known health risks. The F.D.A. has a special provision to allow talc in table salt, even whilst it is prohibited in all other foods, due to toxicity issues. According to current regulations, table salt can be up to 2% talc.” (Corriher, 2008)
The US FDA has approved  at least 18 chemicals to be added to refined table salt for various purposes that have nothing to do with health. These chemicals provide NO nutritional benefits. (Corriher, 2008) & (Trainor, 2014)

 

A TIP
Be sure to use only a sea salt, NOT refined table salt, in your neti pot or you’ll be treated to an intense burning in your sinuses … a clue to how harsh refined table salt is.

 

 

 

HIMALAYAN PINK SEA SALT

 

tumblr_mkbbrhqgn41ra1ir4o5_1280

Himalayan pink sea salt is actually mined from  250,000,000 year old salt deposits located in a mountain about 300 km from the Himalayas, in the Khewra Salt Mines, the second largest salt mine in the world, located in Pakistan. It’s beautiful pink color comes from large amounts of iron oxides and the other trace minerals in it.

 

Khewra Salt Mines in Pakistan

(Source: www.bestphotosite.net)
(Source: www.bestphotosite.net)
Himalayan pink sea salt provides many health benefits:
  1. Provides your body with all essential minerals and every trace mineral that it needs
  2. Generates hydroelectric energy in your body’s cells
  3. Increases conductivity in nerve cells for communication and information processing
  4. Helps to create an electrolyte balance
  5. Increases hydration
  6. Dissolves and eliminates sediment to remove toxins
  7. Extracts excess acidity from your body’s cells to stabilize PH, including the brain cells
  8. Enhances the absorption of nutrients through the intestinal tract
  9. Controls the water levels within the body, which regulates them for proper functioning
  10. Aids in reducing the common signs of aging
  11. Balances the sugar levels in the blood
  12. Regulates you blood pressure
  13. Stabilizes irregular heartbeats
  14. Prevents muscle cramps
  15. Aids in proper metabolism functioning
  16. Strengthens bone structure. Osteoporosis in many ways, is a result of salt and water shortage in the body
  17. Balances PH (alkaline/acidity) and helps to reduce acid reflux
  18. Promotes kidney and gallbladder health – helps the kidneys to pass excess acidity into the urine
  19. Regulates health sleep patterns naturally
  20. Helps maintain sexuality and a healthy libido
  21. Prevents gout and gouty arthritis
  22. Prevents goiters
  23. Regulates water content both inside and outside the body
  24. Helps maintain muscle tone and strength
  25. Lowers incidence of sinus problems, and promotes over-all sinus health
  26. Supports healthy respiratory function – clears mucous plugs and sticky phlegm in the lungs, particularly in asthma and cystic fibrosis
  27. Eliminates persistent dry coughs – just put a dash on the tongue
  28. Prevents varicose veins and spider veins
  29. Helps treat emotional disorders
  30. Preserves serotonin and melatonin, known antidepressant neurotransmitters
  31. Stops excess saliva production
  32. Is a strong anti-stress element for the body
(Astarita, 2015) & (Natural Health International, 2014)

 

(Source: www.buzzle.com)
(Source: www.buzzle.com)

 

See What Are the 84 minerals in Himalayan Salt? for additional information on the health benefits of and uses for Himalayan Pink Sea Salt. (Garvin, 2015)

 

 

 

OTHER DELICIOUS SEA SALTS

A few other noteworthy sea salts to try – each has a different taste and texture (Hardin, 2014) & (Loesch-Quintin, 2012):

 

Hawaiian Red Sea Salt

(Source: shop.thespicelab.com)
(Source: shop.thespicelab.com)
This fine or coarse grained red sea salt is rich in trace minerals and iron. It gets its color from a natural mineral called Alaea, a volcanic baked red clay. Hawaiians traditionally use this salt in ceremonies to cleanse, purify and bless tools, canoes, as well as in healing rituals for medicinal purposes. It has long been prized by native Hawaiians for its spiritual and health benefits. (SaltWorks, 2016B)
Next to Himalayan pink sea salt, Hawaiian Red Alaea is my favorite salt. I sprinkle it over salads to add crunch and an earthy taste.
I also put some on the palm of my hand and lick it off to restore balance to my cells if I’ve become dehydrated.

 

 

Celtic Sea Salt (Sel Gris)

CoarseGrey

Celtic sea salt is naturally extracted through sun drying and is grayish in color. It supplies, in bio-available form, all 82 trace minerals needed by the human body for optimal health.
Health benefits provided by Celtic sea salt:
  • Regulates heartbeat and blood pressure
  • Eliminates mucus buildup
  • Improves brain function
  • Balances blood sugars
  • Alkalizes the body
  • Reduces toxins
  • Increases energy
  • Provides electrolyte balance
  • Builds immunity
  • Promotes restful sleep
  • Prevents muscle cramps
  • Generally restores good digestion
  • Will keep virtually indefinitely if properly stored
  • Contains all 82 vital trace minerals
(Holistic Health Reforms, 2014) & (Water Benefits Health, 2013)

 

 

Fleur de Sel

(Source: food-hacks.wonderhowto.com)
(Source: food-hacks.wonderhowto.com)
Fleur de Sel is believed by many chefs to be the best finishing salt on earth.  Its irregularly sized and unevenly shaped refractive crystals range in color from from barn owl gray to oyster white.
Fleur de Sel is also very high in mineral content as a result of the well-controlled evaporation process used by the salt rakers who harvest it from the salt pans where the sea water is evaporated. It contains 0.25% calcium, 0.37% magnesium, and 0.09% potassium – as well as varying trace quantities of iron, zinc, manganese, and dozens of other minerals. These combine with the sodium chloride to form a well-rounded and mellow finishing salt. (Bitterman, 2014)
(Source: www.monticelloshop.org)
(Source: www.monticelloshop.org)
There are numerous other healthful and beautiful, unrefined sea salts. See The SaltWorks® Gourmet Salt Guide and The Healing Properties of Unrefined Salts for information about them and additional information on the health benefits of the sea salts described above. (SaltWorks, 2016B) & (Hardin 2014)

 

 

(Source: www.trusper.com)
(Source: www.trusper.com)

 

 

 

MORE READING ON SALTS

If a fascinating and easy to read history of salt is tantalizing to you, I highly recommend Mark Kurlansky’s Salt: A World History.
Mark Bitterman’s Salted: A Manifesto on the World’s Most Essential Mineral, with Recipes is a satisfying guide on how to use the various sea salts.
And my favorite post of the ones I’ve written so far: The Healing Properties of Unrefined Salts (Hardin, 2014).

 

 

“There is a real misunderstanding about salt. On one hand, our consumption of salt seems to be killing us. On the other hand, we cannot live without salt. So, in order to answer this loaded question we must first explore the differences between table salt and unrefined salt.”
– Radiant Health Strategies (2010)

 

 

Camels Transporting Salt Across Desert in Mali

(Source: www.slideshare.net)
(Source: www.slideshare.net)

 

 

 

REFERENCES

Astarita, D. (2015). Discover 32 Amazing Himalayan Pink Salt Benefits, Plus Why Table Salt is ‘Bad’. See: http://www.mikeanddonnagetalifestyle.com/discover-32-amazing-himalayan-pink-salt-benefits-plus-why-table-salt-is-bad/

Bitterman, M. (2014). The Four Facets of Fleur de Sel. Salt News.  See:  http://www.saltnews.com/2006/12/the-four-facets-of-fleur-de-sel/

Bitterman, M. (2010).  Salted: A Manifesto on the World’s Most Essential Mineral, with Recipes. See: http://www.amazon.com/Salted-Manifesto-Essential-Mineral-Recipes/dp/1580082629/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&qid=1336427112&sr=8-10?tag=food52-20

Corriher, T. (2008). The Truth About Table Salt and The Chemical Industry. See: http://healthwyze.org/reports/115-the-truth-about-table-salt-and-the-chemical-industry

Fentress, S. (2011). Why Does Table Salt Contain Iodide?  See: http://indianapublicmedia.org/amomentofscience/table-salt-iodide/

Garvin, K.S. (2015). What Are the 84 minerals in Himalayan Salt? See: http://www.livestrong.com/article/534033-what-are-the-84-minerals-in-himalayan-salt/

Hardin, J.R. (2014). The Healing Properties of Unrefined Salts. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/?s=healing+properties+unrefined+salts

Holistic Health Reforms. (2014). Why Use Celtic Sea Salts?  Health Freedom Resources. See:  http://healthfree.com/celtic_sea_salt.html
Kurlansky, M. (2003). Salt: A World History. See: http://www.amazon.com/Salt-World-History-Mark-Kurlansky/dp/0142001619

Loesch-Quintin, L. (2012). 10 Salts to Know. Food52.com. See: http://food52.com/blog/3377-10-salts-to-know

Natural Health International. (2014). Himalayan Crystal Salt.  See: http://www.himalayancrystalsalt.com/health-benefits.html

Radiant Health Strategies. (2010). All About Salt.  See:  http://www.radianthealthstrategies.com/healing_power_of_salt.php

SaltWorks. (2016A). History of Salt. See: https://www.seasalt.com/salt-101/history-of-salt/

SaltWorks. (2016B). The SaltWorks® Gourmet Salt Guide. See: https://www.seasalt.com/salt-101/saltworks-gourmet-salt-guide/

The Salt Institute. (2013). Iodized Salt. See: http://www.saltinstitute.org/news-articles/iodized-salt/

Thomas, P. (2009). What Type of Salt is Best? Ecologist.  See:  http://www.theecologist.org/green_green_living/health_and_beauty/270993/what_type_of_salt_is_best.html

Trainor, B. (2014). Refined Salt vs Sea Salt: 5 Reasons to go Natural. See: http://www.glutenfreeschool.com/2014/09/09/refined-salt-vs-sea-salt/

Water Benefits Health. (2013). Celtic Sea Salt: 10 Key Health Benefits and Usage. See:  http://www.waterbenefitshealth.com/celtic-sea-salt.html

 

 

© Copyright 2016. Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.

 

DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

 

New White House NATIONAL MICROBIOME INITIATIVE

 

(Source: www.whitehouse.gov)
(Source: www.whitehouse.gov)

 

It is now known that microbes have an enormous impact – for good or ill – on people’s health and the health of the entire planet. Two days ago, on May 13 2016, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy heeded the advice of scientists and launched a new National Microbiome Initiative. The program will foster interdisciplinary study of the various microbiomes found in and on the human body and across diverse ecosystems. (Nather, 2016)
The new National Microbiome Initiative will begin with a federal investment of $121 million in funding from several governmental agencies and additional private support from more than 100 outside organizations, including $100 million over four years from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
The Initiative will include $20 million in new research grants from the National Institutes of Health, as well as $16 million from the National Science Foundation, $15.9 million from the Department of Agriculture, $12.5 million from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and $10 million from the Department of Energy.
(Source: www.slideshare.net)
(Source: www.slideshare.net)
As the FACT SHEET issued by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) in its announcement of the National Microbiome Initiative states:
“There is no part of the human experience untouched by microorganisms. Microbiome science has the potential to revolutionize healthcare, agriculture, biomanufacturing, environmental management, and even building design and construction.”

 

Microbiomes of the Human Body

(Source: uBiome)
(Source: uBiome)

 

Soil Microbiome

(Source: www.the-scientist.com)
(Source: www.the-scientist.com)

 

 

The FACT SHEET explains why this Initiative is needed and its three main areas of focus:
“Microbiomes are the communities of microorganisms that live on or in people, plants, soil, oceans, and the atmosphere. Microbiomes maintain healthy function of these diverse ecosystems, influencing human health, climate change, food security, and other factors. Dysfunctional microbiomes are associated with issues including human chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and asthma; local ecological disruptions such as the hypoxic zone in the Gulf of Mexico; and reductions in agricultural productivity. Numerous industrial processes such as biofuel production and food processing depend on healthy microbial communities. Although new technologies have enabled exciting discoveries about the importance of microbiomes, scientists still lack the knowledge and tools to manage microbiomes in a manner that prevents dysfunction or restores healthy function.
“The NMI aims to advance understanding of microbiome behavior and enable protection and restoration of healthy microbiome function. In a year-long fact-finding process, scientists from Federal agencies, academia, and the private sector converged on three recommended areas of focus for microbiome science, which are now the goals of the NMI:
  1. Supporting interdisciplinary research to answer fundamental questions about microbiomes in diverse ecosystems.
  2.  Developing platform technologies that will generate insights and help share knowledge of microbiomes in diverse ecosystems and enhance access to microbiome data.
  3.   Expanding the microbiome workforce through citizen science, public engagement, and educational opportunities.”

 

 

(Source: microbialmodus.wordpress.com)
(Source: microbialmodus.wordpress.com)

Click here to see an enlarged version of this graphic.

 

This National Microbiome Initiative is much needed and will be an important part of President Obama’s legacy to the country and our planet.

 

 

(Source: us.anygator.com)
(Source: us.anygator.com)

 

 

Since microbes’ roles in keeping us healthy or making us ill fascinate me, I’m greatly looking forward  to seeing what useful knowledge emerges from this National Microbiome Initiative.

 

(Source: www.pinterest.com)
(Source: www.pinterest.com)

 

 

 

REFERENCES

MicrobialModus. (?). Graphic: Our Microbial Planet. See: https://microbialmodus.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/microbes_poster_large.gif

Nather, D. (2016). Obama administration to launch microbiome initiative, heeding scientists’ calls. See: https://www.statnews.com/2016/05/12/national-microbiome-initiative/

White House OSTP. (5/13/2016). FACT SHEET: Announcing the National Microbiome Initiative. See: https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/whitehouse.gov/files/documents/OSTP%20National%20Microbiome%20Initiative%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf

 

 

 

© Copyright 2016. Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.

 

DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

 

The Cost of Not Eating Organic

Updated 5/15/2016 & 5/16/2016.

 

(Source: naturalfamilymedicine.com)
(Source: naturalfamilymedicine.com)

 

 

Comments made by people I’d thought understood why growing and eating genetically modified and other non-organic foods are dangerous to humans, other animals and the planet spurred me to write this post.

“Why should I pay more for organic carrots? They’re not any bigger than the other kind.”
– heard at a farmers’ market

“Organic is just a label for getting us to pay more for our food.”
– said by an MD

“Genetically modified foods have been tested and are safe to eat.” 

“The US government protects the safety of our food supply.”

Really?

 

DEFINITIONS

GMO
“GMOs (or “genetically modified organisms”) are living organisms whose genetic material has been artificially manipulated in a laboratory through genetic engineering, or GE. This relatively new science creates unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacteria and viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.” (Non-GMO Project, 2016)
Although at least 90% of Americans want labeling, genetically engineered  foods generally are not labeled in the US – thanks to powerful efforts by Monsanto and other big agribusiness companies.
images
CONVENTIONALLY GROWN
Conventionally grown foods are grown using synthetic chemicals such as fertilizers and pesticides, chemicals which get absorbed into the soil and cannot be removed. The purpose of conventional farming is mass production,  out of season growing, and creating a longer shelf life. This type of farming uses monoculture. This means crops are often planted over and over in the same place which leads to more insect infestation and disease, and depletes the soil of nutrients which then leads to more fertilizer use. This endless cycle often leads to massive topsoil erosion. It is also argued that conventionally grown foods are tasteless due to all the chemical treating. (Raj, 2012)
Conventionally grown foods are also not labeled in the US and often contain GMOs along with synthetic chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides.
(Source: foodbabe.com)
(Source: foodbabe.com)
ORGANIC
Organic foods are grown in nutrient rich soil and are free of synthetic chemicals. They are not treated with pesticides or chemical fertilizers. Organically raised farm animals are free of antibiotics and added hormones. They are not fed GMO’s or other drugs. Organic animals are not allowed to have their genes modified. They are raised in healthier environments, are organically fed, and generally eat a wider range of nutrients than animals in factory farms. Organically raised animals are not bred from a test tube. (Raj, 2012)
imgres
GMO FREE
GMO Free means not genetically modified or fed feed containing GMOs.

search

 

 

 

A SUMMARY OF THE ISSUES

 

c777ca09b6bc6d2b1786e668965e7c33

SAFETY FOR HUMANS

The only way to avoid consuming the cocktail of toxic chemicals in genetically modified and otherwise commercially grown foods is to eat organic. “More than 600 active chemicals are registered for agricultural use in America, to the tune of billions of pounds annually. The average application equates to about 16 pounds of chemical pesticides per person every year. Many of these chemicals were approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) before adequate safety testing.
“The National Academy of Sciences reports that 90% of the chemicals applied to foods have not been tested for long-term health effects before being deemed “safe.” Further, the FDA tests only 1% of foods for pesticide residue. The most dangerous and toxic pesticides require special testing methods, which are rarely if ever employed by the FDA. ” (Loux, 2011)

 

(Source: www.hematimefitness.com.au)
(Source: www.hematimefitness.com.au)
versus

 

(Source: www.slideshare.net
(Source: www.slideshare.net

 

 

Contrary to Monsanto’s and other GMO manufacturers and supporters’ claims, the pesticides associated with GMO crops are unsafe for humans, other organisms, and the environment.
A primary example is glyphosate, a broad-spectrum, non-selective systemic herbicide, that is the main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup and Dow AgroSciences’ Rodeo and  is found in many other herbicides as well.
Exposure to glyphosate has been linked to a host of serious health effects: (Robinson, Antoniou & Fagan, 2015)
  • Severe liver and kidney damage
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Disruption of hormonal systems, potentially leading to multiple organ damage and hormone-dependent cancer
  • Developmental and reproductive toxicity, including sperm damage, miscarriage, and premature birth
  • DNA damage
  • Birth defects
  • Neurotoxicity
  • Cancer

 

(Source: www.geneticliteracyproject.org)
(Source: www.geneticliteracyproject.org)

 

High Glyphosate levels are now turning up everywhere:
  • In our blood
  • In breast milk
  • In urine
  • In water supplies
“Glyphosate levels have been found to be significantly higher in the urine of humans who ate non-organic food, compared with those who ate mostly organic food. Chronically ill people showed significantly higher glyphosate residues in their urine than healthy people.” (Robinson, Antoniou & Fagan, 2015)

 

 

 

SAFETY OF THE PLANET

 

glyphosate_kidney_damage

Those more than 600 agricultural chemicals the US government has approved for agricultural use are contaminating our environment and destroying the ecosystem:
  • Polluting the soil and water with toxins
  • Depleting nutrients from the soil, destroying its fertility
  • Destroying  organisms in the soil necessary for growing healthy crops and animals
  • Killing and mutating insects, frogs, birds and other wildlife
Organic farming, while avoiding use of these chemicals, supports the tapestry of ecology, achieving eco-sustenance.
“Certified organic standards do not permit the use of toxic chemicals in farming and require responsible management of healthy soil and biodiversity.
“According to Cornell entomologist David Pimentel, it is estimated that only 0.1% of applied pesticides reach the target pests. The bulk of pesticides (99.9%) is left to impact the environment.” (Loux, 2011)
Also see Repair the Soil’s Microbiome to Resolve the Climate Crisis for clear thinking writer Michael Pollan’s cogent advice on how climate change can be reversed by organic farming. (Hardin, 2016)

 

(Source: raesidecartoon.com)
(Source: raesidecartoon.com)

 

 

 

 

MORE NUTRIENTS

 

(Source: www.healthychild.org)
(Source: www.healthychild.org)
Organically grown foods are more nutritious than non-organic foods. They contain more vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and micronutrients than commercially grown foods because the soil they’re grown in is managed and nourished with sustainable practices by responsible standards. “The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine conducted a review of 41 published studies comparing the nutritional value of organically grown and conventionally grown fruits, vegetables, and grains and concluded that there are significantly more of several nutrients in organic foods crops.
“Further, the study verifies that five servings of organically grown vegetables (such as lettuce, spinach, carrots, potatoes, and cabbage) provide an adequate allowance of vitamin C, whereas the same number of servings of conventionally grown vegetables do not.
“On average, organically grown foods provide: 21.1% more iron (than their conventional counterparts); 27% more vitamin C;  29.3% more magnesium; 13.6% more phosphorus.” (Loux, 2011)

 

 

 

ORGANIC VS FACTORY FARMED ANIMALS

Even aside from the huge issue of the heart breaking, inhumane treatment of factory farmed animals, the meat and dairy products they provide are the foods at highest risk for contamination by harmful substances. For example, over 90% of the pesticides Americans consume comes from the fat and tissue of meat and dairy products. (Loux, 2011)

 

organic-meat-benefits

 

(Source: bodybalance4you.wordpress.com)
(Source: bodybalance4you.wordpress.com)
(I’ll also point out that the corn fed to the factory farmed cow on the right above is almost certainly genetically modified. )
(Source: infograph.venngage.com)
(Source: infograph.venngage.com)

 

The EPA reports that a majority of human pesticide intake comes from meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products because these foods are all high on the food chain. “For instance, a large fish that eats a smaller fish that eats even smaller fish accumulates all of the toxins of the chain, especially in fatty tissue. Cows, chickens, and pigs are fed animal parts, by-products, fish meal, and grains that are heavily and collectively laden with toxins and chemicals.” (Loux, 2011)
The antibiotics, drugs, and growth hormones fed to factory farmed animals are passed directly into their meat and dairy products. “Tens of millions of pounds of antibiotics are used in animal feed every year…. The hormones fed to cows cannot be broken down, even at high temperatures. Therefore they remain in complete form and pass directly into the consumer’s diet when meat is eaten.” (Loux, 2011)
“Between 1985 and 2001, the use of antibiotics in feed for industrial livestock production rose a startling 50%.  Today, antibiotics are routinely fed to livestock, poultry, and fish on industrial farms to promote faster growth and to compensate for the unsanitary conditions in which they are raised.
“According to a new report by the FDA, approximately 80 percent of all antibiotics used in the United States are fed to farm animals. This means that in the United States only 20 percent of antibiotics, which were originally developed to protect human health, are actually used to treat infections in people.” (Grace, 2016)

 

 

ORGANIC TASTES BETTER

Organically grown foods are generally more flavorful and easier to digest than foods treated with synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. They’re more environment-friendly too.  (Quinn, 2000)

 

(Source: organiceatttts.blogspot.com)
(Source: organiceatttts.blogspot.com)

 

 

 

ORGANIC IS ACTUALLY COST-EFFECTIVE

 

(Source: www.economiesofkale.com)
(Source: www.economiesofkale.com)

 

To decide whether it’s worth it to pay more money for organic foods, you have to factor in the additional costs of eating non-organic:
  • Widespread and ever increasing suffering with acute and chronic illnesses
  • The financial  cost of treating these illnesses
  • Treatment of bacterial-resistant infections
  • Subsidies paid to farmers
  • Egregious treatment of animals on factory farms
  • Cost of pesticide clean ups
  • Destruction of the environment
  • Loss of export markets for US-produced GM products
Organic farming produces nutritious foods that keep us and other animals well instead of making us sick as most of our food supply is currently doing. Organic practices also preserve the environment for the future.

 

 

(Source: www.slideshare.net)

(Source: www.slideshare.net)

 

And then there are these additional, hidden costs in figuring how much you’re actually spending for non-organic foods:
“Buying organic food is an investment in a cost-effective future. Commercial and conventional farming is heavily subsidized with tax dollars in America. A study at Cornell University determined the cost of a head of commercial iceberg lettuce, typically purchased at 49 cents a head, to be more than $3.00 a head when hidden costs were revealed. The study factored in the hidden costs of federal subsidies, pesticide regulation and testing, and hazardous waste and cleanup.
“Every year, American tax dollars subsidize billions of dollars for a farm bill that heavily favors commercial agribusiness. Peeling back another layer of the modern farming onion reveals a price tag that cannot be accurately measured but certainly includes other detrimental associated costs such as health problems, environmental damage, and the loss and extinction of wildlife and ecology.” (Loux, 2011)

 

 

(Source: www.glogster.com)

(Source: www.glogster.com)

 

 

 

 

 

(Source: foodrevolution.org)

(Source: foodrevolution.org)

 

 

 WHAT IS FOOD?

Having apparently lost the ability to understand the function of food – to provide nourishment that keeps us well, we’ve reached the point of calling everything we put in our stomachs ‘food’.

 

(Source: www.darkgovernment.com)

(Source: www.darkgovernment.com)

 

 

 

 

READ MORE ABOUT GMO MYTHS AND TRUTHS

 

51D8bkcGfvL._AC_US320_QL65_

If you’re interested in learning more about GMOs and the research on them, I recommend this clear, easy to read source of information:
GMO Myths and Truths – A Citizen’s Guide to the Evidence on the Safety and Efficacy of Genetically Modified Crops and Foods, 3rd Edition. Its authors are Claire Robinson (an editor at GMWatch), John Fagan (PhD in biochemistry, molecular biology, and cell biology, pioneer of genetic testing methods for GMOs, researcher on biosafety and sustainable agriculture, and Director of Open Earth Resource), and  Michael Antoniou (PhD in Molecular Genetics and Head of the Gene Expression and Therapy Group, King’s College London School of Medicine).

 

 

 

cbafe5321fffe44fede7c166aecbdd6b

 

 

REFERENCES

Grace Communications Foundation. (2016). The Issue: Antibiotics and the Food Animal Industry. See: http://www.sustainabletable.org/257/antibiotics

Hardin, J.R. (2016). Repair the Soil’s Microbiome to Resolve the Climate Crisis. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2016/01/29/4404/

Loux, R. (2011).  Top 10 Reasons To Go Organic: Choosing fresh foods can help you feel better and preserve the environment. Prevention. See: http://www.prevention.com/food/healthy-eating-tips/top-reasons-choose-organic-foods

Non-GMO Project. (2016). See: http://www.nongmoproject.org/learn-more/

Raj, T. (2012). Conventional vs. Organic vs. GMOs. See: http://www.examiner.com/article/conventional-vs-organic-vs-gmos

Quinn, J. (2000). Essential Eating: A Cookbook – Discover How to Eat, Not Diet. P. 6. See: http://www.amazon.com/Essential-Eating-Cookbook-Discover-Diet/dp/0967984351

Robinson, C., Antoniou, M, & Fagan, J. (2015). GMO Myths and Truths: A Citizen’s Guide to the Evidence on the Safety and Efficacy of Genetically Modified Crops and Foods, 3rd Edition. See:  http://www.amazon.com/GMO-Myths-Truths-Citizens-Genetically/dp/0993436706

 

 

© Copyright 2016. Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.

 

DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.